Surroundings

Arezzo and its amenities

Antiques Fair

http://www.fieraantiquaria.org/

La Manifestazione

The Antiques Fair started in 1968. It takes place in Piazza Grande and in the nearby streets on every first Sunday of the month and on the Saturday before it. The exhibitors are from a lot of Italian city and the visitors are from all over the world. Here you can buy ancient, rare and beautiful items.

 

Saracen Joust

http://www.giostradelsaracinoarezzo.it/

saracino 2

"I have seen outriders roam your countryside, O Aretines, and seen raiding-parties charge, Tournaments clash and knights galloping..."
Dante Alighieri, The Divine Comedy, Inferno Canto XXII.

The Saracen Joust is an ancient game of the chivalry age, but dates further back to the Middle Ages and it was born as an exercise for military training. The competition takes place every year in Piazza Grande on the last but one Saturday of June (in the night) and on the first Sunday of September (in the afternoon).

The town Quarters participating in the Joust are: Porta S. Spitiro (yellow and blue colours), Porta S. Andrea (white and green colours); Porta Crucifera (red and green colours) and Porta del Foro (yellow and crimson colours).
On the day of the Joust the historical procession marches on parade through the center of the city, before entering Piazza Grande. Here the Herald reads the "Challenge to Buratto" (a poetic composition written in octaves), the Joust's musicians (Musici della Giostra del Saracino) play the Saracen Hymn; there is the wonderful performance of the flag wavers (Sbandieratori di Arezzo). The show begins.
The knights of the four quarters gallop their horses with lance in rest against the Saracen, an armor-plated dummy representing a Saracen (Buratto, King of the Indies). The competition, guided by the "Maestro di Campo", is won by the couple of knights who hit the Saracen's shield obtaining the higher scores (scores range from 1 to 5). In the event of a draw between two or more Quarters after the standard number of charges (two sets of charges for each knight) the prize is assigned with one or more deciding charges. The quarter associated to the winning knight receives the coveted "Golden Lance".

 

Piero della Francesca

Piero_della_Francesca_http://www.pierodellafrancesca.it

The itinerary to discover Piero della Francesca's pieces, in the discrict of Arezzo, twists and turns through Valtiberina valley, moving from Sansepolcro, Monterchi (home village of his mom Monna Romana) to the city of Arezzo.

 

 

 

Casentino

The Casentino is one of the four main valleys in Arezzo’s province.

It’s the valley of the first stretch of the river Arno, which originates from mount Falterona (1654 m.). Mount Falterona, together with mount Falco (1658 m.), forms the northern boundary of the valley on border with Romagna. At East Alpe di Serra and Alpe di Catenaia separate the Casentino from the Tiberina valley. To the west, the natural boundary between Casentino and Valdarno Superiore is Pratomagno. The Falteronas western mountains group separates the Casentino from the Mugello valley.

The landscape varies from large forests of the mountain areas to flatlands and hillsides of the valley. The particular features of the area probably represent one of the reasons why St. Francesco d’Assisi chose the Verna (now site of a Franciscan monastery) as a pray place, and St. Romualdo founded the hermitage of Camaldoli.

The valley is divided into 13 towns, part of the Comunità Montana association of the Casentino: Bibbiena, Capolona, Castel Focognano, Castel San Niccolò, Chitignano, Chiusi della Verna, Montemignaio, Ortignano Raggiolo, Poppi, Pratovecchio, Stia, Subbiano e Talla. The main Casentino centres are Poppi, which is part of the club of “Most Beautiful villages in Italy”, and Bibbiena, the main industrial and handicraft centre.

http://www.casentino.net

Anghiari

Anghiari is an ancient walled town that dominates the entire Tiber Valley. The original nucleus of the town dates back to the 11th century when the Camaldolesi monks, who were mainly responsible for its economic and artistic development, helped to give the town its form. The powerful monastery of St. (Bartholomew) Bartolomeo, which was later transformed by the Perugians into a defensive structure (the Cassero), and the Christian Chiesa della Badia were the first buildings in Anghiari. The high walls that surround Anghiari have protected and preserved the historic centre over the centuries and remain almost intact, just as they were when they were built between the 12th and 13th centuries. The town can be entered by three gateways, Sant’Angelo, San Martino and Fiorentina. Some of the most characteristic elements of the town, the apse of the Chiesa di Sant'Agostino and the Bastione del Vicario, are incorporated into the walls. The old Borghetto square, now known as Piazza Mameli, is in the heart of the town and is the location of two important museums that hold the memories of Anghiari: the Museum of the Battle of Anghiari in Palazzo Marzocco is the historic museum of the town; the Museum in Palazzo Taglieschi is the art museum of Anghiari. The town centre was expanded in the 14th century when the noble Tarlati family commissioned the long road, “the Cross”, that leads to Sansepolcro and the Loggia with its water fountains, which can be found below Piazza Baldaccio (formerly Piazza del Mercatale), which was also enlarged.

http://www.anghiari.it/new/

Sansepolcro

The center is encircled by walls, featuring gunners by Bernardo Buontalenti; it is located near the prestigious Fortezza di Giuliano da San Gallo. Visitors to the town are sure to appreciate its Medieval palaces, Renaissance towers and frescoed churches. The center is still true to its authentic feel which  inspired the likes of Piero della Francesca. The artist used to sign his name ‘Pietro dal Borgo’ and he rendered his hometown immortal in many of his works, representing it as the ‘ideal city’ that was often debated in Italian courts.

http://www.turismo.intoscana.it/site/it/localita/Sansepolcro-00002/?d=1

 

Cortona

Since 2003 the town of Cortona has the honor to host the Tuscan Sun Festival, an annual classical music and art festival that is very renowned and appreciated all over the world. The festival has been conceived by American entrepreneur of IMG Artists Barrett Wissmann, by cellist Nina Kotova and by writer Frances Mayes, author of the famous novel “Under the Tuscan Sun”. During the 1990s they expressed the common desire of bringing together musicians, singers and artists from many disciplines in a single big event.

The town of Cortona, where the promoters of the festival live at present nearly permanently, has immediately been chosen as the ideal location, thanks to its intimate and welcoming atmosphere and its historical and artistic charm.

http://www.cortonaweb.net/it

 

Le vie di san Francesco d’Assisi

Cortona-La verna

http://www.turismo.intoscana.it/site/it/itinerario/San-Francesco-dalla-Verna-a-Montecasale/

For those soul-searching, there may be no better place to find oneself than in Tuscany. In particular, the natural, tranquil and historic backdrop of the Valtiberina(the Tiber Valley) is an ideal setting to promote both physical and spiritual wellness.
The area is also crossed by a deviation of the Way of St. Francis, which comes as no surprise, since the route starts at the sanctuary of La Verna and ends in Sansepolcro.
La Verna is the heart and soul of the true Franciscan cult and marks the place where the St. Francis received the stigmata. The town also houses the most famous convent in Casentino that dates back to the early 1200s.
The journey continues on to Pieve Santo Stefano where pilgrims can visit the Hermitage of Cerbaiolo, which was originally built as a Benedictine Monastery and later dedicated to St. Anthony. At the centre of the complex large pillars and gothic depressed arches surround a seventeenth-century cloister. Separate buildings, such as the church, sacristy, refectory, chapel and cells all radiate off of the cloister.
Heading towards Sansepolcro, travellers come upon the Eremo di Montecasale (the Hermitage of Montecasale) built in 1192, which today doubles as a hospital and a lodging facility for pilgrims. In 1213, the Hermitage openly accepted St. Francis. Today, the architecture is a wonderful example of the “poor style” which emphasises the simplicity of the religious order and the use of local materials.
Ideally, these pilgrimage stretches along with the other sections devoted to St. Francis form a “ring” shaped path that spans over 120km and is divided into 5 or 6 sections.
The journey of St. Francis in the Valtiberina is easily identifiable and clearly marked out by the yellow Tau and can be followed by mountain bike, horse or with the whole family.

 

Il sentiero della bonifica

http://www.sentierodellabonifica.it/

To travel slowly along the Canale Maestro della Chiana [Master Canal of the Chiana area] between Siena and Arezzo signifies discovering the quality of a land which man’s genius has recuperated from out of the water. But not only. Etruscan civilization’s magical roots lie in the midst of this broad valley.
The Val di Chiana is an area in perpetual movement and the century-old land reclamation is a symbol of its continuous transformation.
Engineers, mathematicians, hydraulic experts, cartographers, agronomists and architects all collaborated in the land reclamation of this territory: from Leonardo da Vinci to the Arezzo born Vittorio Fossombroni, a brilliant technician who worked on the project for over 50 years, right up till his death in 1844.

The Canale Maestro della Chiana is an historical hydraulic engineering achievement which even nowadays, plays an important role in this area. In ancient times, the “Clanis” river flowed, through the Paglia river, towards the Tevere, thus flowing southwards. Around the 11th century, the valley begun to turn into marshland due to the land around Chiusi slowly rising because of tectonic movements and erosive materials deposited there. Therefore, the “Clanis” river was unable to flow smoothly towards the Tevere River and instead, flooded the valley for the next five centuries. The first attempt to resolve this situation was carried out by the Medici, and was then continued by the Asburgo – Lorena family, the  Grand Dukes of Tuscany, so thus began the transformation of this valley. The land reclamation and the realization of the ‘Canale Maestro’, across reclaimed areas, canal bridges, tunnels, drains and locks, changed the direction of the water which now flows northwards to eventually flow into the Arno. The result of this, after this area being marshland for centuries, is nowadays one of the most fertile Italian valleys: it spreads over 185 sq. km, 80 of which have been reclaimed and drained out of the marshes, and are protected by embankments, extending for 630 km. 
As a consequence, you can cycle along a truly ‘noble’ pathway, shaped by man and by mother nature, working together in total harmony. A different concept of time is this cycle path’s essential factor, in the sense that the joy of going slowly is rediscovered and in the sense of travelling back through time to the distant and enigmatic past of the Etruscan civilization. But the present is, too, to be discovered, on the footsteps of this fascinating past history, along a route which starts from Chiusi in the labyrinth of Porsenna, the Etruscan king who dared to challenge Rome and actually conquered it, right up to Arezzo’s Chimera, a famous bronze statue dating back to the 4th century B.C. (now in the Archeological Museum of Florence).

This Etruscan journey takes you through legends and mysteries, thousand-year-old Walls and necropolises at Cortona and Castiglion Fiorentino: places where it is easy to lose oneself in intriguing questions which come to mind about a population which, many centuries before Christ, already knew how to express themselves as a modern people, going beyond the limits of time. “Live” traces of the ancient Etruscan Curtun [Cortona]  are visible in the 3rd-2nd century B.C.  ‘Tabula Cortonensis’ [the Cortona Tablet]; this Tablet is one of the most important documents of Etruscan civilization. It is, in fact, a contract that certifies the sale of lands between Cortona families, proving the intense agricultural and commercial activity of the times. Impressive sandstone blocks can still be seen in the Walls of Castiglion Fiorentino, another Etruscan capital and an important place on our journey. 
Thus, history but also nature makes up this border area of Tuscany where the mirror-like waters of the lakes of Chiusi and Montepulciano, rich in flora and in fauna, registered in the C.N.R [National Research Council] as important biotopes, represent an extremely interesting natural oasis for touring cyclists who are also bird watching enthusiasts.

 

Le vie dello shopping

La bottega del cuoio


Via della Fioraja 2 - Arezzo
Telefono: 0575 23944
www.labottegadelcuoio.com


La Bottega del Cuoio, specialized in the manufacturing of artisanal small leather goods, was founded in the heart of Arezzo in 1975 thanks to its owner’s efforts, Antonio Cappello, who was fascinated by the leather processing techniques he saw while travelling in the Middle East.

Outlet

Valdichiana Outlet Village
Via Enzo Ferrari 5 • 
Foiano della Chiana - Loc. Le Farniole
Telefono: 0575 649926
www.valdichianaoutlet.it

The Valdichiana Outlet Village is one of the best fashion outlets in Tuscany, not to be missed if you are looking for a true outlet tour in Tuscany. Located in a beautiful setting, between the provinces of Arezzo and Siena, the complex is characterized by a suggestive and fascinating architecture, featuring all the main and most prestigious Italian and international brands such as Conte of Florence, Replay, Enrico Coveri, Fornarina, Benetton, Puma, Sisley, Bassetti, Bata, and many others. In the over 140 charming shops you can take advantage of great discounts ranging from the 30% to the 70% discount all year long.

Space Prada Outlet
Località Levanella - Montevarchi
Telefono: 055 91901
It's certainly one of the most famous and visited factory outlets in Tuscany. It sells only clothing, bags and accessories by Prada and its other labels such as Miu Miu.

As soon as you walk in, you're given a number - it will be how your purchases will be prepared for you. The outlet moved to be right next to The Mall so there is no longer any need to head out to a location in the middle of nowhere, just head to The Mall with one of the buses cited above at the start of the article to get there!

The Mall
Via Europa 8 - Leccio Regello (FI)
Telefono: 055-8657775

The Mall is the most famous shopping outlet in Tuscany and one of the first ones to open in the region. It's located not too far from the Incisa-Reggello exit on the A1 highway and you will find several signs after the exit showing the way. In addition, there are regular buses that go to The Mall departing from Florence's SITA bus station in front of the SMN train station .

The outlet is specialized in famous, fashion designer shops. Here, you can go shopping at Gucci, Ferragamo, Cavalli, Armani, Valentino and Tod's for the Italian houses. Among the international fashion designers, there is Alexander McQueen, Burberry, Stella McCartney and Yves Saint Laurent and much more, including a whole building right next door for PRADA. More stores opening soon.

Barberino Designer Outlet
Via Meucci • 
50031 Barberino di Mugello (FI)
Telefono: +39 055 842161

The Barberino Designer Outlet is very close to the A1 Barberino di Mugello highway exit, you'll see signs as soon as you exit. There are over 100 shops of the best brands selling almost everything from clothing to cosmetics, from electrical appliances  to chocolate and shoes. The most famous brands are Prada, D&G, Lacoste, Furla, Polo Ralph Laurent, Belstaff and Calvin Klein. Then there is also Puma, Adidas, Pinko, Guess, Coccinelle, Pupa, Malboro Classics Docksteps, Lagostina and Bormioli to name just a few more others. There are shops for all tastes so it is likely if you to go this outlet, you won't leave with empty hands!

Dolce & Gabbana
Spaccio Aziendale: Localita S.Maria Maddalena, 49
Pian Dell'Isola, Incisa in Val D'arno (FI)
Tel: +39 055 833 1300

This is the factory outlet of the famous Italian fashion designers Dolce and Gabbana. It sells underwear, clothing and accessories. We recommend you call before going to verify opening times.

Fendi
Via Europa 8, Leccio - Reggello (Firenze).

Located right next to The Mall outlet center but not within, this factory outlet sells only Fendi products from the past collection. Prices are reduced about 50% from prices in regular stores.

Roberto Cavalli outlet
Via Volturno, 3/3 50019 –
Sesto Fiorentino, Osmannoro (Florence)
web: www.robertocavallioutlet.it

Located right outside of Florence near IKEA in Osmannoro and sells only clothing with the Roberto Cavalli label from past collections. If you like the Cavalli style, then definitely head to this store to search for good deals.

 

E altro...

Busatti

Via Mazzini 14 - Anghiari
Telefono: 0575 788013
www.busatti.com


In Tuscany, in Anghiari, Busatti has handcrafted natural linen fibers, hemp and cotton since 1842. The result are fabrics that keep alive the spirit of the country and the Renaissance traditions but which stay new and innovative through new processing that we put into our colors and finishing, while never sacrificing quality.